United States District Court, D. Utah, Central Division
MICHAEL H. PETERSON, DAVID S. TUCKER, and R. CURTIS PALMER, Plaintiffs,
NATIONWIDE MUTUAL INSURANCE CO., Defendant.
Campbell District Judge.
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFFS'
SHORT-FORM DISCOVERY MOTION
B. PEAD UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
matter was referred to the court under 28 U.S.C. §
636(b)(1)(A). (ECF No. 35.) The Second Amended Complaint
alleges that Defendant Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co.
violated the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards
Act. (See ECF No. 24.) Plaintiffs Michael H. Peterson, David
S. Tucker, and R. Curtis Palmer, filed a short-form discovery
motion seeking to compel answers to three interrogatories
asking Defendant to “[i]dentify each task [the three
individual Plaintiffs] performed without manager approval.
(ECF No. 34 at 18, 36, 50). Defendant timely responded to the
motion. (ECF No. 37). The court did not hear oral argument.
Plaintiffs' motion to compel will be denied because
Defendant adequately answered the interrogatories
motion seeks to compel responses to the three interrogatories
related to tasks each Plaintiff performed without manager
approval. (See ECF No. 34 at 1-4, 18, 36, 50).
Plaintiffs' motion is somewhat unclear, but appears to
suggest Defendant only responded by objecting to the three
interrogatories. (Id. at 3). On January 24, 2018,
Defendant informed Plaintiffs that Defendant did not track
specific instances where Plaintiffs acted without a
supervisor's approval, but that Defendant would produce
Plaintiffs' claims logs as evidence of Plaintiffs'
use of judgment and discretion. (Id.) Plaintiffs
contend the court should compel additional answers because
the information sought is relevant. Plaintiffs suggest
Defendant could glean additional information from personnel,
but that Defendant “refuses to respond.”
(Id. at 4). Defendant points out that,
notwithstanding its objections, it answered the
interrogatories at issue by promising to provide the job
description applicable to each Plaintiff's position and
each Plaintiff's claims log (subject to an agreement
regarding a protective order). (ECF No. 37 at 2). Defendant
further indicated it does not keep records regarding
instances when Plaintiffs performed tasks without approval
from a supervisor. (Id.) Also, the day before
Plaintiffs filed the instant motion, Defendant offered to
provide additional responses to the interrogatories, which
Defendant provided on February 9, one week after Plaintiffs
filed their motion. (Id.) Defendant contends that
any information Plaintiffs seek that has not been provided in
Defendant's interrogatory response can be obtained by
the thrust of Plaintiffs' motion is somewhat unclear,
Plaintiffs have not demonstrated entitlement to any relief.
Below, the court will address three conceivable readings of
Plaintiffs appear to suggest Defendant did not answer the
three interrogatories at issue. This is simply not accurate.
After stating its objections, Defendant answered the
interrogatories by indicating it would produce the
Plaintiffs' job descriptions and claims log. (See ECF No.
37 at 2) (citing ECF No. 34 at 18, 36-37, 50-51).
Accordingly, Defendant responded to the interrogatory.
Plaintiffs' motion could be read to suggest that
Defendant's reference to various documents cannot
constitute a proper answer to the interrogatories. To the
extent Plaintiffs suggest this, Plaintiffs are incorrect.
“If the answer to an interrogatory may be determined by
examining, auditing, compiling, abstracting, or summarizing a
party's business records . . . and if the burden of
deriving or ascertaining the answer will be substantially the
same for either party, the responding party may answer
by” identifying the records and allowing an inspection.
Fed.R.Civ.P. 33. Plaintiffs offer no argument that suggests
they face any more burden than would Defendant in obtaining
an answer from Defendant's business records. It appears
to the court that the burden is roughly equal because
Defendant does not track the specific information Plaintiffs
seek. Accordingly, the court finds Defendant's response
to the interrogatory adequate.
Plaintiffs might be attempting to compel Defendant to ask
Plaintiffs' former supervisors about this information. To
the extent Plaintiffs seeks such relief, the motion fails
because Plaintiffs have not offered any authority to support
that request. Moreover, Defendant's February 9
supplemental response indicates those individuals do not
track instances in which Plaintiffs perform tasks without
approval from a supervisor. (See ECF No. 37 at 3).
Accordingly, even assuming Plaintiffs were entitled to compel
Defendant to ask their supervisors about this information;
Defendant has apparently already asked those supervisors. To
the extent Plaintiffs have further questions for these